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  1. #1

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    Aug 2002
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    Century 3045

    Default Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    Does anybody have any experience with FEL work using larger 2WD compact tractors? There's a lot of nice used 2WD tractors out there for a comparative song. NH TN series and Massey 200 series come to mind. They usually run about 50~HP. Some pretty formidable loaders are made for them, but when you see them for sale they are mostly sans loader. They are usually all collar shift which to me is the least desirable transmission. Are there any other negatives? I ask because every time I turn around, it seems I'm getting into a bigger and bigger MFWD compact (along with bigger and bigger price) to handle the loader work I need done. Even with Kioti, I'm over $20K for a DK50/1590 loader combo. I have found low hour, excellent condition 2WD units that I can add a new loader to and still save around $5K over the Kioti! There's gotta be a flaw somewhere in my thinking or there would be more out there. Who can help me figure this out??

    Thanks!

    pacesetter

  2. #2

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    Houston, TX.
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    2001 TN65, 1951 8N Ford

    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    Those tractors will handle a loader just fine. MFWD handles a loader a lot better but folks ran loaders on tractors for a lot of years before front wheel assist came along. I'd go with the TN before I'd go with the 200 Massey, the Massey is a good dependable tractor but the TN has way better hydraulics. The loaders the local Massey dealer sells all have an add on hydraulic pump for the loader. Our local dealer sells a ton of 231s Masseys with loaders.

  3. #3
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    To my way of thinking, loader tractors used to be primarily 2wd. Now, because 4wd is so much better, there has been a switch and the switch likely is because 4wd is better. Now you will need to decide if the cost difference is worth it to you.

    If you decide to go 2wd, I would suggest you get it with the loader already attached so you don't have to match the loader to the tractor (hopefully that will already have been done correctly). Also, make sure the 2wd tractor has enough beef (weight) and structure (frame) to handle a lot of weight needed in the rear end (shorts).

  4. #4
    Epic Contributor
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    jinman's Avatar
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    NHTC45D, NH LB75B, Ford Jubilee

    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    I'd suggest going to a dealer who has a large MFWD tractor with a loader attached and give it a try with FWD engaged and with it unengaged. Get the bucket full and see if you can back up a slight grade (since backing is the hardest to do with 2WD and a full bucket). You should be able to decide that way. If you have a friend with a MFWD tractor of any size, get them to let you try it both ways. That way you can make the best decision for yourself. Good luck in your search.

  5. #5
    Super Member Robert_in_NY's Avatar
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    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    The 200 series and TN's are not compacts. They are utility class machines and have a lot more weight then compacts. If you are going to go with a Utility class 2wd with loader you must have R-1's on it as you will need all the traction you can get as well as rear weights. My TN 65, FWA, Loader and shuttle cost $25k. With out FWA you will be looking at $20k for a brand new machine.

  6. #6
    Super Member
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    Dec 2000
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    6,737
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    JD 8320 MFWD, JD 6415 MFWD, FEL, and cab, John Deere MFWD 4600, John Deere 4020, John Deere 4430, John Deere 455 mower, Deutz, and Gehl 4610 perkins skidsteer

    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    As a person who used pretty much that same type of tractors for 30 years I can say that yes you will do just fine with a utility type tractor like the deere 5000 series or the like tractor in another. When we ever did need more traction you just put some chains on and you are in good shape.

    Before my 4600 all I had ever used was 2wd tractors. I did more loader work hours than I could ever count with 2wd tractors and never knew I was missing anything. 90% of the loader work I do with my 4600 now is in 2wd. It's awfully hard on that front end if you are making tight turns. If you're on snow, ice, or mud that's ok because you have a little slippage.

    As far as the shifting again that's all I ever knew. Regardless of what some people will tell you a person can get pretty dang fast with a collarshift, non-synchro, etc. It just depends on how lazy you want to make your tractor work. Safety is another issue that's talked about as a knock against gear tractors. When you get good with one I think you don't lose any safety.

    The one thing I don't like is a non-synchro transmission. The problem with these is that you have to be at a complete stop before you change gears. This is definitely slower, esp. for loader work. It's easy to change gears with a synchro but those non-syncho's are tough.

    The other thing that people don't mention is that you really should be at a complete stop whether you have hydro, power reverser, or sychro before you change directions. If you do that you really don't gain much with either one.




  7. #7
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    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    Like Robert said,these are actually small utility/ag tractors.

    The Massey 200 series is their econo line up of models. Most with low tech trannies,and low hydraulic capacity. The Banner Lane built ones are bit higher spec though.

    The NH TN is a newer more updated series of tractors.

    For loader work there is no replacement for mfd!! If you get in trouble with one in twd all you do is engage the front axle,what could be simpler than that.

    No matter how much weight or chains you have on a twd tractor the front end still wants to plow straight ahead in quite a few circumstances. With mfd the front end pulls you through whether going straight or in turns.

    I've used tractors for over 35 years myself,and let me tell you once you've driven a mfd loader tractor,you'll never go back to one with out a driven front axle!!

    Most of the type of tractor that you are looking at,are replaced by bigger or more well equipped models,some very quickly. That is why you are finding so many of them around.

  8. #8
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    frank_f15's Avatar
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    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    4wd is essential on the smaller cuts, as they don't have the wieght or mass for good traction. on the larger tractors it is not a must to have 4wd but it sure can't hurt.

  9. #9

    Join Date
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    Kubota L4610, BX2230

    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    Have to agree with others here. Recently had the experience of inadvertently trying to load a bucket of crusher run gravel (very heavy) while in 2wd... I normally use 4wd for any loader work. Lesson learned is that these short-wheelbase compacts really depend on traction from that front axle especially with a loader. The larger, ag-type tractors, even of the same HP, have more weight and longer wheelbase, so a loaded bucket out in front does less to lighten the back end. Depending on what you're doing and where, those older 2wd's could work just fine. On any kind of slopes, though, I'll take the MFWD; it's hard to beat.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Large 2WD compacts with FEL

    The concept that comes to mind here is Match The Machine to The JOB.
    A 25hp class CUT with loader is similar in size to a Farmall Cub or Massey Harris Pony. I know a loader was available for the Pony, and I'm sure it could not have held its own to a 25hp CUT moving any material, even if horsepower were equal.
    The 2 machines might have had similar turning and maneuvering characteristics, but a Pony had problems transferring it's power to the ground.
    A larger tractor such as an MF 35 or Case 380 2wd machine could probably handle a larger bucket on a FEL, and blow the doors off a CUT with FEL loading material in an open space, but it sure would have trouble in a confined area.
    Till the arrival of 4wd 25hp class machines, tractors in this size catagory were rarely equipped with loaders.
    If you want to load dump trucks, you need a machine with reach to get over the side, and the 25hp class CUT just doesn't have it. If you want to sneak between buildings and into back yards, they are perfect.
    Of course a Bobcat is better for getting in and out of tight spaces, but hard to justify in terms of cost unless you have the work for it.
    Look at the job you intend to do, decide how much money you have to spend, and get the most machine you can afford and justify.

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